WAYAA in focus: Jessica Andony

WA Young Achiever Awards Agriculture Award finalist Jessica Andony has become a great leader within the close-knit Western Australian dairy industry, and has made considerable contributions to the industry over the past year.

Since graduating with honours from Murdoch University in 2014, Harvey-based Jessica (24) has quickly taken a leadership role in supporting the WA dairy industry, both professionally through job as extension, research and youth coordinator for Western Dairy, and in a volunteer capacity supporting youth cattle camps and the cattle show circuit.

As the Young Dairy Network (YDN) Coordinator WA, a Dairy Australia project that works throughout the regions with farmers support networks of young farmers, Jessica is kept busy organising regular educational and social events, and recently completed a trip to New Zealand with a group of YDN individuals to experience international dairy operations.

She has also played critical roles in promoting and managing awards and industry events such as the WA Young Dairy Farmer of the Year Awards and the Legendairy showcase at the Perth Royal Show, volunteered as a group coordinator for the WA Youth Handlers Cattle camp, and has been a consistently high achiever or award winner in various cattle judging events.

But it was Jessica’s professional, technical and emotional support to the 19 WA dairy farms impacted by the Yarloop fires last year that was considered by her peers as the most remarkable contribution, especially given her own family’s farm was amongst those impacted. 

Jessica’s work in the fire response in the weeks and months after made a real difference to the recovery for the farms with whom she worked, as she showed experience and empathy way beyond her years.

Jessica’s nominator said “her strong passion and commitment for her local community and the response to her industry was emotionally challenging but she dealt with everyone in a level-headed, empathetic and professional manner”.

The achievements of Jessica and the remaining three individuals will be acknowledged at the presentation dinner on Friday 12 May, with the category winner to be announced that night. 

One of the eight category winners will then be selected as the Western Australian Young Achiever of the Year and will win an additional $2,000 and a state trophy. 

Tickets to the presentation dinner in the Golden Ballroom at the Pan Pacific Perth are available through the following website, and must be purchased by 28 April: www.wayaa17.eventbrite.com.au

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